Friends Club upset Armymen, NRT win

KATHMANDU: New Road Team (NRT) extended their winning streak to three games after defeating Boys Union Club (BUC) 3-2 while NIB Friends Club shocked Tribhuvan Army Club (TAC) 1-0 to register their first victory in the Martyrs Memorial San Miguel A Division Football League here at the Dasharath Stadium today.

NRT were trailing 1-0 until the 53rd minute before Subhash Rai, Sayan Mosavi and Ranjit Shrestha scored within nine minutes to make a strong comeback. Raju Rai and Subin Ghimire struck for BUC. Raju gave BUC the lead in the 15th minute through a powerful shot from 25 yards that left NRT second choice custodian Binod Dangol clueless.

Subhash scored the equaliser for NRT in the 54th minute with a free header on a cross from Nabin Neupane. Seven minutes later Sagar Thapa supplied a ball to Mosavi and the latter made no mistake. Ranjeet Shrestha then extended NRT’s lead through a spot kick which they earned after Bishnu Sunuwar brought down Sayan inside the area. BUC managed to reduce the deficit in the 78th minute through Subin, who scored in a solo effort stealing the ball from NRT defender.

NRT coach Diken Suwal said he was happy to get a good start but expressed dissatisfaction over his team’s performance. He also said the absence of regular goalkeeper and skipper Surendra Shrestha cost him two goals. “We conceded two goals due to the goalkeeping mistake,” he said.

Later, a solitary 13th minute goal from Azad Pradhan gave Friends Club the first three points after two back-to-back defeats. Azad headed home the winner following a freekick from Deepak Bhushal. TAC were themselves to blame for the loss as they squandered half-a-dozen goal scoring opportunities.

Friends coach Mrigendra Mishra said he was happy to have finally recorded a win. “We were thriving for victory and we got that against a strong side,” said Mishra. TAC coach Raju Kaji Shakya rued the missed chances and pointed out lack of coordination for his team’s defeat. “The team looked like it was not set well. Our boys were a bit impatient and were hurrying to take shots,” said Shakya.

Shakya immediately replaced Bishwo Bairag Samal after he missed a sitter in one-on-one with Friends custodian Rupak Shrestha in the 30th minute. Likewise, Bed Narayan Chaudhary missed from a close range in the 75th minute and Ram Kumar Bishwas did not even bother to going for a free header in the dying moments.

Hari Khatiwada and Milan Pokharel, two of the lucky winners chosen from the San Miguel Fan Zone, gave away the San Miguel Most Valuable Player trophies to NRT’s Sayan Mosavi and Friends Club’s Deepak Bhusal respectively.

today’s matChes

• Machhindra FC vs Three Star @ 1:00PM

• MMC vs APF @ 3:00PM